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5 Mistakes To Avoid When Importing

Would you like to save TIME and MONEY when importing?

We are guessing you answered – YES! 

As Freight Forwarders, we have heard ALL the horror stories of inexperienced importers trying to tackle customs alone and even experienced importers who fail to keep up with documentation for their goods. 

At Ramsay Customs and Logistics, we are here to save you the headache by sharing the top 5 mistakes we see all the time with importers that are simple to follow and easy to prevent. 

#1 Failing to Understand Shipping Terms 

The shipping industry is regulated by laws known as Incoterms. It is very imperative to understand these laws because they are always used in contracts for International trade and failure to understand them can result in major issues. 

We see this mistake from both experienced and first-time importers alike and it can result in them getting underpaid, hit with an unexpected bill, accidentally overpaying, and even to the point of getting hung up in a lawsuit. 

#2 Failure to Prepare Paperwork

Another mistake we often see with importers is failure to prepare paperwork before their shipment arrives at customs. There is a wide range of documents that have to accompany every single item that comes into Canada. Failure to prep this paperwork can mean the difference between making money and losing money. 

When an importer sorts their paperwork BEFORE the goods are shipped, delays are minimized, and extra charges from storing cargo upon arrival to Canada can be avoided. 

#3 Procrastinating to Book

We are about to be knee-deep in peak shipping season which runs from August through the holidays in December. During this chaotic time demand skyrockets, and shipping lines tend to take more bookings than they can carry which leads to delays. If an importer fails to book in advance, they can miss their deadlines and fall behind in their business. 

#4 Skipping Insurance

It’s a dime a dozen with importers choosing to skip insuring their goods – Don’t take that gamble… Trust us, it’s not worth the risk. Aside from the obvious risks such as natural disasters or fires,  other mishaps like improper handling, theft, or a lost shipping container are super common in the shipping industry. Hence, why it is so important to insure your goods as an importer AND understand shipping terms. Check out our blog on Cargo Insurance for more info on these terms! 

#5 Trying to Navigate Importing Alone

These are just some of the MANY mistakes we often see importers make, but we have to say the biggest is failure to seek assistance. It is our sole job at Ramsay to keep up with the everchanging freight forwarding process so that we can make sure our experienced, inexperienced, and first-time importers’ goods are cleared through customs as seamlessly as possible. Let us take on the headache of importing for you! Get in contact with one of our team members today –